Falcons linebacker Nate Stupar is back once again answering your questions about the team, the 3-0 start, his contributions to the wins, and more.
Are you enjoying getting to play more on defense?
Nate Stupar: I am really enjoying my opportunity at playing defense. Sam is a very natural spot for me. Now that I got a taste of playing defense during the season, it makes me want more. I'll do whatever the coaches ask of me though. I know Brooks Reed is stepping back into the starting role, but I am always ready for my next opportunity when I'm called upon.
Is there any concern that playing more on defense and being a key special teams contributor will wear you down?
Nate Stupar: I thought about it going into my first game starting agains the Giants, but after I got into the flow of the game, it really didn't matter to me that much. We practice at such a high pace tempo every play that I have great endurance. Especially with how Coach Armstrong makes us 'run'. I enjoyed being exhausted after every game, knowing that I helped contribute to the wins.
I know you say halftime is too short for adjustments but with technology I see you guys going over pictures after every drive. Do the coaches just make adjustments on the fly or do they preach recognition and ride you guys on execution?
Nate Stupar: After every drive we do go over pictures of every play on the Microsoft 'Surfaces' that we have on the sidelines. It is actually pretty cool because you can see exactly how the play turned out. In the NFL the plays go so fast so sometimes it happens differently in your head, but getting the ability to see it right after clears up a lot of unknowns. We always make adjustments on the fly and you have to have the ability to execute on the dime, if not you won't last long. You have to be a quick learner and transition it to the field.
What was going through your mind after making that monster tackle on 1st down? You were pumped as hell and so are we fans.
Nate Stupar: Haha, I was super pumped after that tackle for loss on 1st down. It was a big play. Anytime you get the offense in a 2nd down and long it makes all the other downs easier and the more likely you get off the field after 3rd down. On that play the Tight-end blocked down and #70 pulled out to block me, I hit him and used my hands to shed him. All of a sudden the fullback showed up and I lowered my shoulder to get under him and on the outside. Then who would of thought the running back decided to join the party. I put my pads under his and wrapped him up. It happened so quick. And then I got super juiced and started yelling. I don't think people understand the emotion that flows in a play like that. It takes you to another level of competition. It lifts you up to another level of ball. That was a fun play.
Is this the most fun you have had in your pro career?
Nate Stupar: I do believe this is the most fun I have had in my pro career. Who doesn't have fun when your winning for one. Two, this group of guys is so tight niched that nothing breaks us apart. We know that we will all compete to the very last second on that clock. We have each others backs. And when you have each player doing that, you gel and a brotherhood is formed.
Favorite cheat day meal?
Nate Stupar: My favorite cheat day meal would have to be Chick-Fil-A. I don't know why but it is so good. I love the Chick-Fil-A sauce and the waffle fries! You just can't beat it.